Best SUV under 26K
By Sheila Sullivan on
Vehicle2002 Mazda Tribute LX-V6 2WD 4dr SUV (3.0L 6cyl 4A)
ReviewVery peppy performing "small" SUV that feels like a mid-size vehicle & corners like a sports car. Lots of room inside for "real" people, including rear seat legroom. Fold the rear seats down & it becomes a serious hauler - very tall & wide rear hatch. Gas mileage is consistently around 20 mpg (& I drive it enthusiastically!) Just can't beat it for the bucks. After a lot of research, we are strongly considering another new Tribute next year. There just isn't anything else in its class that combines great looks, true functionality, economy of operation, and FUN to drive.
Best Features(1) Sports car-like handling. I thought SUV's were "supposed" to be squishy & lethargic. (2) People + "stuff" hauling capability (two full- sized touring bikes easily carried with all doors closed) (3) 4 Cyl like gas mileage from a strong V-6!
Worst FeaturesThe cloth seats seem to be durable and the lumbar support is good, but they are a bit too stiff, especially for long trips. I hope Mazda's engineers might notice that & lobby for more stuffing where the fanny meets the fabric.
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